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BackgroundEdit

Election Results from November, 2006, Washington CountyEdit

Rep Gen Assembly Dist. 50Edit

BackgroundEdit

• Lifelong Resident of the 50 District • Owns and Operates a Family Farm • Degree in Environmental Science from Slippery Rock University • Graduate of Waynesburg High School • Morris Township Auditor, Greene County • Community Activist • 11-Year Career in Professional Football • Executive Board Member Arena • Football League Players Union


Issues (harvested on November 9, 2006Edit

Legislative Reform:Edit

Supports immediate passage of a full lobbying disclosure law, and voting and spending disclosure laws that allow voters easy access to legislator actions. Will work to reduce bloated government through legislative reform in the areas of size, scope, and spending.

Tax Reform:Edit

Will fight to unburden taxpayers by lowering property and school taxes through increased consumption taxes and reduced government spending. Wants voters to have a greater voice in how their money is taxed and how those taxes are spent. Believes that economic development cannot happen until money is put back in the pockets of those who earned it.

Economic Development:Edit

Supports business development in our region but knows that the critical first steps are reduced government spending and tax reform. Is pro-union, and will work to ensure a living wage for workers and their families. Supports several higher education initiatives, such as; tuition breaks, vocational training programs partnered with local businesses, and creation of a small business training program for entrepreneurs who want to establish businesses here at home.

Responsible Stewardship of the Environment:Edit

Supports protection of the environment while providing for decent public services for all 50th District residents. Believes in more public information and assistance for those who need help with environmental issues.

A New Beginning:Edit

The 50th District needs a new start--a new beginning, with new leadership that is trustworthy, compassionate, responsive, and based on integrity.

Q & AEdit

QUESTION 1: Do you believe we need legislative reform in Pennsylvania?

Yes, I do, and I think most people inside and out of government agree with me.

Some of the initiatives I support are: 1) immediate lobbying reform through passage of a full lobbying disclosure law, 2) a voting disclosure law that allows voters to review bills pending in the State Assembly, and 3) full disclosure of legislative voting records immediately after bills are voted upon.

I am looking at several other initiatives, including reducing the size of our state assembly, which is very large when compared to other states. However, before we change anything, we would need to be careful about how districts are redrawn to ensure that rural Pennsylvania does not get hurt in the process.


QUESTION 2: I live in Greene County and my family used to spend our summers at Ryerson Station State Park fishing and boating on Duke Lake. Now that Duke Lake has been destroyed, what do you think should be done about this?

I live in Nineveh, which is near Ryerson State Park. My community uses this park extensively and is very concerned about Duke Lake’s destruction in 2005. Ryerson is the only state park in Greene County and now our residents have nowhere to go for lake fishing or boating.

Barry Stout and Bill DeWeese sent everyone a survey in 2005 to see how we feel about losing the lake. It is hard to understand the point of that survey, unless it was to pacify people and convince them that something is being done. Obviously, the overwhelming majority of people responded that they want the lake rebuilt. We don’t need anymore delaying tactics. We need to resolve this quickly by fixing responsibility for this problem and getting on with finding the solution.


QUESTION 3. I am a Democrat and I plan to vote for you in November even though you are a Republican. Since most of the voters in the 50th District are Democrats, how do you expect to get the rest of them to vote for you too?

That’s a good question! I know I have a very tough fight ahead of me, and over the course of the next few months you will see me out on the campaign trail every day. I don’t think I will have any problem at all gaining the confidence, and the votes, of our District’s Democrats.

I am a moderate Republican who shares many of the ideals set forth in the Democratic Party’s platform. However, I am a fiscal conservative, first and foremost. I want to see money stay in the pockets of those who earn it.

I strongly believe that tax reform is our number one issue and is vital to getting our region economically primed for growth and development. We cannot instill an entrepreneurial spirit in the 50th District until we deal with the overburdening tax problem.

Let me assure you, though, that I have a social conscience and I understand that compassionate societies must have social safety nets and programs that help people so they can thrive as productive members of the community.


QUESTION 4. What is your position on gun control?

I am a member of the National Rifle Association (NRA) and I support their public policy platforms and I endorse their programs.

The NRA has given me an “A” rating, which is as good as it gets for someone who does not have a public voting record for them to assess.

I hunt, I shoot trap and skeet, and I strongly believe that it is the right of all law-abiding citizens to own weapons.


QUESTION 5. What is your position on labor unions?

I am absolutely in favor of unions. I helped found the Arena Football League Player’s Association, and was a labor representative in that union.

Labor unions are a long-standing American tradition and they serve as one of the principle methods for protecting workers’ interests in our country.


QUESTION 6: Do you think that Pennsylvania’s new gaming laws will ultimately provide some of the tax relief that you talk about?

I am not sure anyone knows the answer to this one. The 2004 Gaming Act (Act 71) first had to beat a legal challenge in the State’s Supreme Court in 2005 before the Gaming Control Board could begin to hold hearings and generate assessments for licensing the 61,000 slot machines that will eventually be placed in 14 venues. There re also unresolved policy issues facing the Gaming Control Board. How long all of this will take remains to be seen.

Also, there are some reports indicting that slot machine revenues may not provide much tax relief for homeowners. One study I saw estimated that Greene County, alone, could average less than $50 dollars per year per household from slot machine revenues. That is not tax relief!

Finally, Pennsylvania Lottery revenue projections are flat lined through 2013. If that’s true, then how much more gambling revenue can we expect? Maybe this isn’t a growth industry, after all, and it might not be wise to put too many eggs in this basket.


QUESTION 7. I read that you want to help property owners get tax relief. How will you do this?

As a member of a family farm enterprise in Greene County, I understand the tax burden that has been placed on property owners.

The steepest part of this burden is school taxes. I support the use of a consumption tax to help spread this responsibility across the whole community.

I especially endorse additional property and school tax relief for elderly land owners. We have not done enough in this area.


QUESTION 8. What is your plan to help us protect our water? It seems like the coal companies are destroying our streams, creeks, and water tables.

I have worked with water conservancy groups for several years as a concerned and active member of the community and I am concerned about environmental damage, including the impacts of long-wall coal mining.

I believe we need a strengthened relationship with the coal companies, focused on responsible mining.  

I would also like to see more public sector support for people whose property is scheduled for long-wall mining. This is often an overwhelming, catastrophic event for people and they need more information and guidance than they are currently getting.


QUESTION 9. What is your platform for economic development?

I want to create an entrepreneurial spirit through the development of several rural Pennsylvania initiatives, including attracting new businesses to our region.

Unfortunately, the first critical step in this process is to get our government spending under control and get everyone’s tax burden reduced so there is more money left in people’s pockets to fuel this development. We must cut bloated government spending, and institute tax reform in order to prime the pump of economic development. That’s the only way it can happen, and it is one of my biggest priorities.

I am also pro-union, and I will work to create an environment where our residents can stay in the District and earn a living wage for their families.

Finally, I understand that economic development is dependent on a quality education and the development of marketable skills. I support several higher education initiatives, including tuition breaks for our children, greater vocational education through on-the-job training with businesses in our District, and the development of small business training programs, so our residents can stay here and start businesses of their own, if they choose to do that.


QUESTION 10. There is a rumor going around that you don’t really live in Greene County. What is the real truth about what you do and where you live

I am a life-long resident of Nineveh, which is in Morris Township. I was born here, went to school here, graduated from Waynesburg High School, and Slippery Rock University.

After college, I went straight into professional football as a member of the Arena Football League (AFL) where I stayed for eleven years. During those years the season lasted about six months. When I was not playing football, I was in Nineveh, working on the family farm, supporting community activities and serving as Township Auditor.

When I retired from football this past year, I came right back to Nineveh, where I hope to dramatically expand my role in public life by becoming State Representative for the 50th District.


QUESTION 11: The incumbent has 30 years in politics and obviously has a lot of experience. What do you know about politics?

That is precisely the point, and is the reason I am running for this office!

The incumbent has been there so long he has broken faith with the people he is supposed to represent. He is not responsive to the electorate, and he is no longer looking out for our district’s best interests.

Many people have told me they don’t feel like they even have a State Representative anymore. It has become obvious to me that we have a mandate for change.

What I will bring to this office is my passion for our region, my integrity, my experience as a leader, and my tireless resolve to improve the standard of living for all of our residents. These are the traits we need most of all in this office, and I have them.

LinksEdit

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